The Darling Dahlias and the Silver Dollar Bush

Written by Susan Wittig Albert
Review by Vicki Kondelik

In this fifth book in a mystery series set in the small town of Darling, Alabama in the 1930s, the town’s bank closes – temporarily, or so the townspeople hope – and local businesses are suffering. The bank’s new president, Alvin Duffy, comes up with a scheme to print fake money called Darling Dollars to serve as local currency and keep businesses open until the bank recovers. But the Darling Dollars are stolen, and soon it appears that Duffy may be cheating the town and breaking the hearts of a few of its women. Meanwhile, Elizabeth Lacy, president of the women’s garden club, the Darling Dahlias, has her own heart broken when she finds out her longtime boyfriend might be forced to marry another woman. Will she and the Darling Dahlias be able to save the town?

This book is absolutely delightful, and full of authentic details on life in the South during the Great Depression. Since I had never read any of the previous books, it took me a while to sort out who everyone was, but the list of characters was very helpful. I would definitely like to go back and read the previous books. Depression-era recipes are included.